His eyes opened to long dark lines extending into infinity of green and black and white spread out before him. He wasn't sure where he was or what happened. Who was he? The last thing he recalled he was standing at the terminal at the airport, his best friend by his side directing his gaze to a shapely blonde heading toward her flight, possibly the same one they were taking. His mind was a bit dazed, his memories a jumbled mess. His insides felt like a broken glass. Maybe he was dead. He smelled the scent of wet grass, the myriad odors of different plants and the embracing smell of rotting wood. Crickets chirped their cacophony of voices. He started moving. His side felt as if it were on fire. A bolt of lightning raced up his spin as his legs groaned in pain. What had happened? Where was he? Slowly, his beleaguered head turned left and right. It looked like a jungle. The lines he saw shooting forward were the high tree trunks of old palms rising to their sky; their thick canopy of leaves blotting out the sky. He started stumbling away from the shock of pain in his side toward his right hip struggling to get up. He wasn't sure how he'd got here, but he knew he wasn't staying. Staggering to his feet, his left hand dipped into his left jacket pocket and pulled out two miniature bottles of Scotch. He had been drinking. Maybe that explained how he found himself laid out on his back in the middle of the jungle.
A woman's scream grabbed his attention and his head jerked to the right. Someone was in trouble. Ignoring instinct, he raced to the only other sounds of humanity. His feet hurting him carried him to the sounds. Where did they come from? Possibly the beach… The running figure charged over land as fast as he could, hastening onward like the Minute Men of old but without the musket and the uniform. At the tree line, the full dose of sunlight blinded him and he saw nothing but empty beach and white sand before an endless horizon of ocean, a band of dark blue stretched as far as the eye could see. There was not a sight of humanity but for the water hitting the reef, but then the screams came again from beyond the high bushes to his right. Ignoring a respite to catch his breath, he rushed toward the melee and upon round the thick foliage he came to the sickening realization of what had happened…
A huge passenger plane rested upside down on the beach where it had crashed. One wing thrust into the air with a torn and ripped wheel gear; it's other wing spread out across the beach into the water, its jet turbine still roaring on the last inklings of jet fuel being pumped from its shattered tanks. It looked like a giant decapitated metal bird still trying to claw its way into the sky. Around it people were stumbling or walking around in a gaze.
One girl held her gashed abdomen closed but wandered around screaming for her family.
Husbands screamed for wives; wives called for missing husbands to give them solace.
Scattered and spilled luggage surrounded the plane with pieces of jagged and ripped metal pointing skyward.
A young man of Hindu descent wandered around in a daze looking for his best friends.
The jet turbine on the beach continued screaming over the voices on distress and terror.
A father staggered and wandered in circles looking for his son.
A red-haired girl still strapped to her seat laid on her side in shock struggling to free herself.
Through the debris, a man in a casual suit raced through guiding the others away from the plane. He helped the girl out of her seat belt, hoisted her up by his shoulder and guided her to an Asian man to get to safety. He was taking a position of authority. He was either the plane's air marshall or some other person of authority. His head noticed his watcher and broke his trance.
"You! I need your help!" It was a matter or urgency. He grabbed a few other confused survivors and joined the other men trying to lift part of the downed wing. There was a man pinned under it. He was clawing and fighting to free himself; the turbine over him screaming louder and lower as it burned up the last of its fuel. Two more guys joined the first five and they started fighting to lift the wing or dig out their fellow passenger. Another creak sounded from the downed wing and the man was jerked free from his would-be grave.
"He's got internal injuries!" The younger man looked around. "Turk, where are you?" His eyes spanned the melee of people staggering around or racing into the woods for help that didn't come.
"Are you a doctor?"
"Dr. John Dorian… medical doctor…"
"You'll have to do…"
"I'm not a surgeon!"
"You'll do until we find one." Police lieutenant Mac Taylor patted the young physician to give him confidence. "Try and help as many as you can!"
"Excuse me…" One of the other rescuers stopped Mac. "Have you seen a boy? His name's Jake and he's…"
"Sir, there's a lot of people wandering through the jungle." Taylor saw the girl with the slashed stomach. He checked another body lying in the sand, but they were already dead, another casualty out of almost a hundred. He noticed the blood staining the girl's top.
"Young lady, how bad are you hurt?" The screeching turbine was getting worse.
"I can't find my family." The girl was in shock. "My little sister, Charlie…"
"I got her…" Someone came to help her.
"You the surgeon?"
"Jim Clancy, I'm a paramedic!"
"Get her looked after then…" Out the corner of his eye, someone staggering out of the surf was sucked into the turbine and it exploded. It's screeching and caterwauling shrieks were eliminated with one loud ball of flame and light spraying even more wreckage. Hot pieces of metal shot out spraying in every direction either striking survivors or making strange dances across the ripped and disheveled sands. Their routes indiscriminately seared through the people barely injured and buried into the already dead. It also vibrated loose what little braces was holding the jutting wing into the air. Following the waning scream came the growing groan of the collapsing plane and detective Kimball Cho came charging to the rescue again. He lunged at the last moment and grabbed the man in front of him, throwing him to the sand as the last intact part of the plane tried squashing the last of it's survivors scattering to get out from under it. Taken from the air, the fallen passenger plane died on that white South Pacific beach; the tip of it just coming inches of striking a resident from Pasadena. A physics expert from the California Institute of Technology, Rajesh Koothrappalli stopped looking for his colleges and noticed the giant metal wing very nearly crushing him into the beach. Even in that moment of near disaster, passengers wandered around looking for friends or family and searching for signs of civilization. A hut, a road, a building in the distance… there had to be another sign of life on this island. Dr. Dorian was trying to be a surgeon by sewing up the slashed abdomen of Teddy Duncan from Denver with a needle and thread from one of the suitcases. He didn't have any painkillers to keep her from feeling the pain, and all through her misery she kept asking if anyone had seen her sister or family. Jim was wrapping the arm of Peter Brady from Los Angeles, California, it was the umpteenth fractured bone he had guessed without a x-ray machine and more and more people were coming with gashes to the head or limping on possibly broken legs. Out the corner of his eye, he noticed someone trying to do an artificial restoration.
"You're not doing it right!" He hurried over. The victim was a brunette middle aged woman pulled from the water. "Let me do it!" He looked briefly around the carnage of confusion and wreckage, the wandering survivors and checked the woman's air pipe. It wasn't blocked, but he knew the right point to apply pressure.
"She wasn't breathing." Howard Wolowitz, another physicist from Cal Tech, stood aside embarrassed. "I thought I could…"
"Never do CPR if you don't know what you're doing!" Jim pounded her chest and pumped her diaphragm three times then gave her three quick breaths. Three more thrusts to her chest, three more breaths to her lips…
"Jill…" Someone knew the patient in the sand. "Jill! That's my wife!"
"She is?" Howard looked to him. "She's a beautiful woman."
Jill finally found her breath and woke up coughing and gasping for air. Jim checkered her pulse to his watch as Tim Taylor dropped to his wife's side. The trip to Sidney was supposed to be a second honeymoon, but if they had just went to the Detroit Auto Works like he had wanted, they would not have been to in a plane crash over the South Pacific. The delirious mother of three boys looked to Jim checking her pupil reaction for a possible concussion.
"Jill?" Jim remembered what her husband had called her. "How's your head? Any ringing? Any numbness?"
"No…" She looked around. "What happened?"
"The plane crashed." Tim and Howard echoed together, looked at each other and looked away again.
"We got you breathing again." Grinning abashedly, Howard tried to share credit with Clancy.
"Keep her head up…" Clancy spoke to her husband. "Normal breaths, let me know if…"
"Jim!" JD called over from patching over survivors in the shade. "I'm running out of bandages!"
"I'll try and find some more in the wreckage!" Jim looked to him and back to the former TV Tool Man. "Keep her calm and out of the sun." He looked at Howard. "Try and find her some water."
"Check!" Howard noticed his buddy Rajesh wandering around twisting a cap off one of the bottles of water spilled from the plane; once it was open, he took it and gave it to Jill.
"Dude, I was going to drink that."
The shrill ringing noise from the explosion had gradually abated from the crash. Taylor had found and reunited with Natalia Boa Vista and Greg Sanders, two forensics experts from respectively Miami and Las Vegas he had met at the seminar he spoke at in Sidney. One of the other speakers at the conference had been Dr. Spenser Reid to discuss new behavioral science techniques created by the FBI. He came staggering from the surf after swimming it in, getting helped on to the beach by Kimball Cho from the California Bureau of Investigation, the same man who had saved Brady from the collapsing wing. Staggering on to the beach, Jack Hodgins looked for his wife. It had been her idea to honeymoon in Australia. He felt he was walking around in a dream that hadn't ended. Everyone was either wandering around or standing in shock over what had happened. He panned the faces of everyone around him as his cute Irish-Chinese beauty looked up, recognized him then rushed to jump into his arms.
"Maybe we should have gone to France." He told her, but she was just hysterically happy to see him alive. The worst seemed to be over. As things calmed down and Taylor had a grasp of what happened, he assessed the situation. The plane had been ripped apart in mid air by turbulence. It had to be the most shoddy factory defects in the fuselage to rip off the cockpit and the tail section, or maybe just maybe there was a death ray on the island taking down airplanes. In the linger peace several of the survivors started calling for long friends and family. Alan Harper called for his brother. Wolowitz called for his best friend, Leonard. Lily Finnerty called out for her parents.
"We're going to need a passenger manifest." Cho looked to Taylor. "We need to start identifying the lost and the dead."
"Get on it…" Taylor took unofficial status as leader. "Search the plane and the surroundings. "Sanders, you and Reid scout the beach for supplies. Could be several hours until rescue gets here."
"What do you want me to do?" Boa Vista looked for something to do. He looked at the bruise on her head and the large bleeding gash across her shoulder and chest.
"Let the doctor and the EMT check you out…" Taylor looked around again. "I don't want those getting infected." He looked over to Dorian wrapping up another woman, a blonde housewife named Cheryl Belushi from Chicago, Illinois. She and her husband Jim had also taken the second honeymoon to Sydney.
"Meanwhile, I'm going to start collecting and looking for supplies and stuff we're going to need…" He took his first breath with his adrenaline winding down. "Doc!" He handed Natalia over to Clancy. "How goes it?"
"Okay…" JD wished he were back at Sacred Heart with better more endless supplies. "Just a lot of really hurt and injured people…." He used vodka to disinfect Natalia to stretch out the alcohol for the more serious injuries. "Did you find a guy named Turk yet? He's my buddy. I kind of want to know he's okay."
"Well…" Taylor looked around the eleven to fifteen people trying to survive from their injuries then back to JD. "He's either one of those wandering in the jungle or one of the passengers who went down in the tail section." He pointed over to the ridge beyond the bay. "I saw a plume of smoke over there after the crash… and the tail section should be in that direction over there." He made a direct line with his hand between the ridge, the fuselage and the jungle.
"My wife was in the tail section…" Clancy spoke. "Think they're still alive?"
"We can hope." Taylor left Natalia in better hands. She looked to JD wrapping her arm, but he didn't have a dressing large enough for the gash in her chest, but it was so peripheral he was sure it'd heal on its own if kept clean.
"Can I go?" She looked to JD.
"Just take it easy…" The young doctor responded. A year out of his internship and he was thrust into battlefield level injuries. Survivors were banding into groups. Others were looking for their belongings. Jim sighed tiredly.
"Almost as bad as the emergency room back home…" He wondered about his wife. "Who else?"
"One more…" JD lifted the back o his shirt. The stinging pain in his side was a piece of shrapnel in his lower ribs under his arm. It was bloody and swollen.
"Your turn, doctor…" Jim reached for the last of the vodka to clean the wound after he pulled the metal out of the skin. He was also going to need more thread to patch it up and seal it. JD winced as he became the patient. Through his eyes, he saw a beautiful visage of a woman wandering out of the jungle. She had long blonde hair and a nice figure in a white t-shirt and blue jeans. A college student from Detroit, Bridget Hennessey looked at Howard and Raj staring and admiring her figure then back toward Jim patching up JD among the other survivors sitting in the shade.
"What's the matter with you guys?" She staggered a bit from landing in the jungle. "You never saw a plane crash before?"
"Well, yeah…" Howard nervously stuttered. Rajesh found another girl tugging at his hand. She was a cherubic one-and-a half-year-old blonde little princess covered in leaves and twigs. She had fallen out of the plane and had landed in bushes. Running through the jungle, she approached the first non-threatening person she had noticed. Of all the people she thought that was, little Charlie Duncan thought that was Rajesh Koothrapalli. He looked at Charlie then back to Howard.
"Well, she is a little cutie…" Howard teased.